We appreciate our incredible volunteers every day, but this Volunteer Appreciation Week is extra special and gives us an opportunity to share the stories of some of our most fantastic and dedicated volunteers. With more than 150 amazing volunteers here at the sanctuary, we consider ourselves extremely lucky. Congratulations to those selected as a Volunteer of the Year!
Volunteer of the Year – Christine S.
Our staff is OVERWHELMINGLY excited to reveal that our 2021 Volunteer Of The Year is Christine S.! Next month marks the 2 year anniversary since she joined the Carolina Tiger Family, and this amazing woman has logged nearly 1,000 hours in that time. Not only is she a Tour Guide, enthusiastically educating visitors who come to learn about the animals who call Carolina Tiger home, but she is also an animal care volunteer, giving back to the very same animals whose stories she shares on tour. Her passionate dedication to our mission is demonstrated during every volunteer shift, and her eagerness to learn more is remarkable. She goes above and beyond every day and it’s our pleasure to honor her today.
Dian S. is our outstanding gift shop volunteer of the year! Dian joined the Carolina Tiger family one year ago and has time and time again stepped up to help wherever she’s needed. Whether it’s sanitizing the shop to ensure a safe shopping experience for visitors, prepping items to fill the shelves, or pitching in at check out, Dian has been a tremendous help and we are lucky to have her on the team.
Sarah M. is our exemplary animal care volunteer of the year! Sarah joined the family back in the summer of 2016 and has logged more than 1,300 hours since! She is the ONLY volunteer in our history to stay on after enrolling in vet school, and she is an incredible asset to our animal care team. She never backs down from a task, no matter what it is, and is always ready to lend a hand and lead new volunteers to success.
Chris B. is our exemplary Tour Guide volunteer of the year! Chris joined the Carolina Tiger Family almost two years ago and quickly worked his way to being a Guide. He’s logged nearly 400 hours and has helped bring our mission to life for countless tour guests. His passion for our resident animals (especially the caracals) is apparent to anyone whose been lucky enough to be on one of his tours, and we feel so honored to have him on board.
Our construction volunteer of the year is Chris C.! Our resident Aussie joined the team back in 2018 and has been lending a hand ever since. He is always willing to help with any project around the sanctuary and is a quick and independent worker. We know we can simply give him a checklist to complete and are confident in his ability to get it done right. He has been a tremendous help to our site team and we are lucky to have him here.
Rene M. is our outstanding fundraising volunteer of the year! Rene joined the team back in 2013 and has dabbled in a number of volunteer roles since then. Most recently, she joined our event team and assisted with our biggest fundraiser of the year, The Black Tie and Tails Ball. This year was the first time we went virtual with the event and Rene’s efforts and tenacity were a big part of that success.
Heather M. is our outstanding “at home” volunteer of the year! Heather and her family were a tremendous help to our team as we reopened tours this past year. They helped create festive enrichment boxes for the animals to play with, and each one helped brighten up the Enrichment Tour experience for guests. You might have even seen photos of their decorated boxes on social media! So even while staying home safe with her family, she still managed to lend a hand and make a difference!